Sunday, 8 June 2008

this is ... my favourite travel memory

Ah, what a great topic this week. It was a great excuse to go back through all of our holiday snaps and I was pleasantly surprised to realise that one of our best overseas trips was also one of the easiest and cheapest. New Zealand was abound with fun things to do and spectacular scenery but the undoubted highlight of the trip was our day spent on the Franz Josef glacier.

The view from partway up the glacier. Can you see the tiny people on the half day trek? And the river of melted glacier water going out to the sea?

Yes, the steps really were as steep as they look. We had ice picks on our shoes but it was still pretty scary, especially coming down.

Sliding down a wormhole - a naturally occurring tunnel in the ice. It was cold and wet but so much fun!

A kea. These parrots are notoriously cheeky. Our guide warned us that they like to steal lunches and told us about a bird that once stole one of his party's lunch out of their bag then came back later to drop the empty container on their head.

Still on the topic of travel, we are planning a trip to Europe with Asian stopovers in August. I've found lots of crafty things to see in London but wonder if you can advise on any particularly good shops or lesser-known museums in any of the other cities we will visit: Shanghai (I know there's a shoe museum there but frustratingly can't find an address!), Barcelona, Brussels, Amsterdam, Paris and Singapore.


Anonymous said...


Uh, it's Christine from NILS... I've been lurking for a little while. Hope you don't mind *shuffles feet*. But you have stumbled into my territory so I thought I'd share. I'm not big on shopping but museums:

The only museum I got to in Brussels (what a disasterous weekend that was) but it was fabulous:
Horta Museum

Other ones I wanted to see but didn't make it too:
Museum of Musical Instruments
Belgian Centre for Comic Strip Art
City of Brussels Museum of Costume and Lace

If you REALLY want museums hop on the train to Leiden, it has the most museums per capita in the world or something impressive like that. The RMV (Museum of Ethnology) is my favourite ( and one of these days I'm going to make it to the SieboldHuis! (
or you can get on a train to Utrecht and go to the Dick Bruna Huis (I'm ashamed to say I haven't been here yet either)

I can't really say anything about Amsterdam though, because I avoid going there whenever I possibly can. Pity the Rijksmuseum is being renovated--yes, not exactly a "lesser known" museum but they used to have stuff about the Dutch discovery of Australia in the basement (being from Perth, seeing the actual Hertogh dish was very exciting! Why yes, I am a bit tragic). The Nieuwe Kerk and The Hermitage often have interesting exhibitions but the August listings don't look very inspiring. And as much as I dislike the city, I can probably answer questions about it.

Sorry for the long comment!

Lisa said...

I think this is the first NZ post I have seen for this theme. I have never been but from all accounts it is a fantastic place.

Your adventure looks like the trip of a lifetime. Pretty scary in parts!

Enjoy your trip this [northern] summer.

Anonymous said...

wow... what an awesome adventure... and great pix!!!

Sarah C said...

WOW Franz Joseph Glacier looks amazing so close - I got as close as the highway but must say my trip to NZ last year and the drive from Queenstown to Reefton and on to Christchurch was Awsome. Ans I have to agree NZ is a great holiday destination especially for driving tours.
I look forward to reading about your future travels.